CANNES, FRANCE – The Young Lions Competition in the much-anticipated Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is one that most young creatives only dream of joining. For Lance Francisco and Zachary Lim of J. Walter Thompson Manila, they not only got to join the competition, but won a Bronze award as well.
The duo from the Philippines had to compete with other young creatives from different parts of the world. The brief? Come up with a way to improve subscription donations from Millennials for the World Wildlife Fund. By taking on a different approach and thinking out of the box, the two landed on an idea that they felt would strongly resonate with their intended audience.
Read our interview with the duo below:
adobo magazine: What does it feel like to have won Bronze for Young Lions? Did you have a feeling from the get go?
Winning a bronze feels amazing. We’re elated really. It still doesn’t feel real sometimes. I don’t think it’s entirely sunk in just yet. We also feel very thankful to even have this opportunity. We’re really happy that we could make IMMAP and JWT proud with our work especially after all the support they gave us.
adobo magazine: What was the competition like?
It was very intense. You could feel how badly the other competitors wanted to win. Nothing too negative. Just really really intense. In the end everyone was just really respectful of the work and the competition. What was fun though was that even just the city of Cannes is so beautiful, our basic brainstorming was really fun. We would brainstorm on the beach, the parks, the small cafes on the side. It was just great fun enjoying the city even though we were working.
adobo magazine: What was the final brief that you had to work on? How did you approach it?
The brief was for WWF. The objective was to get Millennials to apply for their subscription donations where a donation would be taken directly from your account every month. The brief described Millennials as kind of flighty. They didn’t have enough time or attention for the big issues. But we personally didn’t feel that way. We didn’t agree with the brief. So we dug deeper. We realized that Millennials actually have a very different view of the future. They read about A. I., self-driving cars, breakthroughs in robotics. Its really different from WWF’s message of an uncertain future. So what we did was we revisited the subscription model and made it a payment model for future technology. You could buy a hover board by the year 2030 by paying every month. And that payment will be split. 50% will go to the start up to help create the future. 50% will go to WWF to make sure we make it to the future.
adobo magazine: Any new things you learned from the competition?
It was actually surprising to see that a lot of people abroad, despite being from different cultures, actually thought the same way. It was interesting to see how some insights could be universal. In a battle of ideas, we definitely felt at par with other creative cultures. We felt like we could do anything they could do. We also realized that when you compete internationally, the craft really needs to be on-point because that is what will help you cut through different viewpoints and be universally understood. Our jury was practically a creative U.N. so we really had to keep that in mind.
adobo magazine: What’s next for the two of you?
In the immediate future we’re just chilling. We want to make the most of this trip out so Lance is going to Spain and Zach is going to Paris. After that, Lance is going to be starting his new job in Ogilvy Shanghai so he’s already learning some Chinese and downloading WeChat. Zach will be going back to JWT and really working on getting a Lion for real work this time. We think Cannes was all about absorbing all these amazing insights and the next year will be all about squeezing out ideas. Hopefully enough to get us back to Cannes.
Images courtesy of Lance Francisco and Zachary Lim